The Maryland Senate paid tribute Friday to longtime reading clerk Lynne B. Porter, who is retiring after 29 years as its voice.
Porter, who was installed shortly after Thomas V. Mike Miller was elected Senate president in 1987, said it's time for her to spend more time with her new grandchild. She will work through the end of the General Assembly session April 11 at midnight.
For almost three decades, Porter has announced bills as they reach the floor. She also reads bills crossing the Senate desk at a pace similar to that of an auctioneer. All the while, she manipulates the computer screen that flashes bill information on the large screen above the Senate floor. Before each recorded vote she intones "Mr. President."
With the days dwindling in the 2016 session, the Senate adopted a resolution Friday honoring Porter's service. She was called up to the rostrum to receive the senatorial accolades.
Miller recounted how she became one of his first hires as he moved to add diversity to the Senate staff, adding that before Porter was hired the job had always been a political patronage job.
When the proclamation came up for a vote, the staffer who tried to put the resolution up on the screen wasn't able to do so. So Porter -- known for her unflappable demeanor -- stepped down from the rostrum and put her own resolution up on the big board. It passed unanimously.